As Fix Forward continues to grow and empower entrepreneurs in the construction industry, we often stop to reflect on our past to critically examine how our model is impacting the lives and businesses of the tradesmen and women in our programme. We recently caught up with Shepherd Mtyatya – a builder and painter who joined us in 2014 – to chat about the progress made since first we met.
A consummate professional, Shepherd was previously the head of maintenance at the prestigious One&Only Hotel – a five star hotel and resort located in the centre of Cape Town’s hottest tourism commodity, the V&A Waterfront. Although the challenge and experience of working at such a world class facility was invaluable, Shepherd got the ‘entrepreneurial itch’ and decided to branch out on his own. Shortly after establishing his own Construction and Painting business, Shepherd heard of Fix Forward through his network and immediately reached out to us…
After acceptance into the Fix Forward development programme, Shepherd eagerly began participating in our business development and skill training workshops. Due to our holistic approach, his business acumen rapidly developed alongside his chosen trade skills. Fix Forward helped Shepherd to become better organised, especially with the administrative side of things with which he was not as familiar, and this enabled him to develop his business to where it is today. Based in Phillipi, Shepherd hopes to continue to grow both his skillset and his business to the extent that, in five years, he is able to employ even more staff and tackle even bigger projects.
Shepherd’s favourite project with Fix Forward was the renovation of over 10 schools for a local NGO. Involved from the outset, Shepherd saw the project go from a paper dream to actual brick and mortar structures that help make Early Childhood Development nurseries a lot more habitable. Other than these projects, Shepherd and his team predominantly work on the construction and renovation of private homes.
Shepherd’s partnership with Fix Forward allows him to subcontract other tradesmen for many of his projects, thus creating a network which results in growth for all affiliated. Our comprehensive vetting procedure bridges the trust gap between the client and tradesmen by ensuring all tradesmen on the site are reputable and come complete with solid references. As a result of this, Shepherd says that when Fix Forward organises a quote for a client he knows that he’ll get the job 80% of the time. It is for this reason that he has no hesitation in recommending us to others in his extensive network. Keep up the good work Shepherd!
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